Citizens of Mesquite,

Thank you for signing up for my newsletter.

I am your representative for the Southern Nevada Health District and I will always update you on the latest news in that area.

There are so many causes worthy of our awareness, not just on a particular day or month, but all year long. I'm especially thankful for the sacrifices and service of our veterans.
Health News
Respiratory Viruses On the Rise
 
Cases of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and influenza continue to rise in Nevada and throughout the United States. The Southern Nevada Health District is urging you to get your flu vaccination.

Respiratory viruses typically spread during the winter, but according to the SNHD, the surges are occurring earlier than usual. SNHD Chief Health Officer Dr. Fermin Leguen urges area residents to take precautions including getting their flu vaccine and staying up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccines as they are eligible. There is currently no vaccine that specifically prevents RSV.
 
Dr. Leguen also recommends people help prevent the spread of RSV and other respiratory illnesses by staying home when they are sick, covering their coughs and sneezes with tissues or their sleeves, washing their hands frequently with soap and running water, and cleaning frequently touched surfaces. Additionally, adults with respiratory symptoms should limit their interactions with children due to their higher risk for severe illness from RSV.
 
RSV was discovered in 1956 and is now one of the most common causes of childhood illness. It is a very common ailment; nearly every person has an infection with the virus in their first few years of life. RSV is a cause of the common cold in people of most ages and most people recover within a week or two. However, for infants and young children, it is the most frequent cause of inflammation of the bronchial tubes of the lungs, and of pneumonia.

RSV symptoms include fever, chills, headache, general aching, fatigue, and loss of appetite. To learn more about RSV, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at www.cdc.gov. For information about COVID-19 and influenza vaccines visit www.snhd.info/covid and www.snhd.info/flu.

November is American Diabetes Month

The District is citing diabetes as one of the most prevalent diseases in the United States. More than 37 million Americans have diabetes, the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S. and the primary cause of kidney failure, lower limb amputations, and blindness. People with diabetes are also at a higher risk of developing more serious complications from the flu and COVID-19.

Approximately 254,000 people in Nevada have been diagnosed with diabetes. It’s estimated an additional 70,000 people have the disease but don’t know it, thus increasing their health risks. Approximately 18,550 Nevada residents are diagnosed with diabetes every year. SNHD Community Health Director Dr. Michael Johnson said, “As diabetes reaches epidemic proportions in the U.S., people are developing the disease at younger ages and at higher rates. People with unmanaged diabetes are twice as likely to develop heart disease and stroke than those who do not have diabetes.” About one in three Nevada adults has prediabetes with blood glucose levels that are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.

Throughout the year, the Southern Nevada Health District’s Office of Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion offers free resources, diabetes self-management classes, and a six-session Road to Diabetes Prevention program. Programs are available in English and Spanish, in-person and virtual. They can be accessed on the Get Healthy ClarkCounty and Viva Saludable websites or by calling (702) 759-1270.
I asked Mesquite Fire and Rescue Chief Jayson Andrus about diabetic emergencies. He tells me they respond to diabetic calls on a regular basis. Signs and symptoms vary depending on high or low blood sugar levels.

Family members and caregivers can assist by having an up-to-date medication list including dosages for his responding crews.
It is important to remember if a diabetic patient becomes unconscious due to hypoglycemia, do not insert any food or candy into their mouth in an attempt to raise their blood sugar. This can often lead to obstructing the patient's airway, further complicating the situation. If you or a family member are having a diabetic emergency call 911 immediately as these are life-threatening if not treated appropriately. 
Remembering Andy Barton
Following his return as City Manager in May of 2021, I regularly began meeting with Andy Barton to discuss items of importance to the city. With his previous years in the city, he had a wealth of knowledge of its history.

He spoke softly, eloquently, and so thoroughly about topics. With his vast experience and my being new to the city council, I soaked in what he told me. I enjoyed discussing city issues as well as our shared love of cats.

Andy had a dry sense of humor and the most wonderful smile. A brilliant leader, he passed away peacefully at home on October 16. I do miss our conversations.
Food Truck Tailgate Party at Mesquite Visitor Center
Mesquite Visitor Center was alive with excitement on October 21 in the early afternoon with a tailgate party of great food, a bounce house, and live music.

Nick Montoya, Director of Athletics and Leisure, reports over a thousand people stopped by late afternoon and early evening to enjoy the weather, fun, and food. Food trucks from The Corndog Company, SmokeN'Grind, Mexican Grub and Fired Up Creations offered a variety of tasty items to enjoy. Moreno Bounce house kept the young folks entertained and the live music was provided by the Dry Heat.

More activities are forthcoming at the Mesquite Visitor Center.
Virgin Valley Amateur Radio Club
Virgin Valley Amateur Radio Club had a booth at the tailgate party on October 21. I learned all sorts of things about their club I didn't know.

Founded in 2005, the Virgin Valley Amateur Radio Club was formed to promote the advancement of Amateur Radio communications for public service and emergency support.

Their members support our local CERT and Fire Department for secondary emergency communications. They are linked with Mesa View Hospital to communicate with sixteen southern Nevada and six southern Utah Hospitals in emergency communication and training.

The club continues to support the Grandmaster Ultra 100-mile run in the Arizona desert in early February and two 100-mile runs on Flat Top Mesa in late February and October. They are currently focused on being a contributing member of the Mesquite STEAM Program to teach an entry-level Technician License Class and establish an amateur radio station for student and public use.

The club call sign is KE7END and is located primarily in Mesquite and surrounding communities. The LVRA repeater is 448.020(-) MHz, PL Tone 136.5 which is linked to the Las Vegas Repeater Association(LVRA) repeater complex and the CARLA Repeaters throughout California. The local repeater is KE7EIF. Its frequency is 446.500 (-) MHz, PL tone 136.5.

Meetings are held at Mesquite Fire Station #3 on the second Monday of each month at 6:00 p.m. except for July and August. The weekly net roll call begins on Monday at 7:00 p.m. on the LVRA repeater and concludes with a simplex net on 146.520 MHz or the local KE7EIF Repeater 446.500 (-) PL 136.5. Net roll calls are not held on meeting nights.

Their website is www.vvarc.net Contact one of the officers for information on how to get licensed, free online testing materials, and other information. Visit their Facebook Page and feel free to give them your suggestions and comments.
Mesquite Welcomes New Police Officers!
On October 26 I attended the swearing-in ceremony for Officer Del Schlosser, Officer Hayden Solis, and Officer Matt Esplin as the newest members of the Mesquite Police Department.

Officer Schlosser is retired from a law enforcement career in Utah and has been working as a civilian employee in the department. He vacated his civilian job and accepted a position as an officer. Officer Solis came to MPD after working the past five years as an officer with another agency in Clark County. Officer Esplin graduated from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Academy and was initially sworn in in August.

We are fortunate to have Chief Chesley select the "best of the best" for our city. Thank you for serving our community!
R.A.I.S.E. Mesqueek Halloween Parade
The excitement was building on Arrowhead Street on October 29 for the 3rd Annual R.A.I.S.E. Mesqueek Halloween Parade. Children of all ages (including those of us young-at-heart) found a good spot to view the parade. Squeals of excitement were deafening when the first spookily decorated vehicle pulled out into the street. There were zombies, skeletons, huge scary spiders and webs, flashing neon lights, and eeery music.
Thank you, Carly Toutant and all who planned, participated, and made the event fun and safe.

Our community is better because of R.A.I.S.E. and we appreciate what everyone does in that organization.
More Halloween Fun and Treats ...
...at the October 31 - 16th Annual Trunk 'Ar Treat. So many thanks go to

Mesquite Police Department, for organizing, preparing, and providing a safe place to enjoy a "pirate" Halloween trunk or treat,

Mesquite Gaming for donating the use of the Casablanca parking garage for the event location,

and businesses and residents who donated candy for the trick-or-treaters.
Mesquite Fire and Rescue Raises Funds for Cancer Society
At the November 8 Council Meeting, Fire and Rescue Chief Jayson Andrus presented to Mesquite Cancer HELP Society Director Mary Grace Jensen a check for $7,027.90 from their annual t-shirt fundraising event. Excellent work!
In Recognition of Veterans
Several events were held in Mesquite to recognize our beloved veterans and celebrate our patriotism. Saturday, November 5 the annual Veterans Day Flag Ceremony was held at Veterans Memorial Park. The event, organized by U.S. Army Veteran Al Litman, included posting of the colors, a rifle salute, playing of "Taps", and patriotic music by Glory Girls Cindy Good, Doris Points, and Diane McClure. In his remarks, Mayor Litman said "Veterans Day is a public holiday held on the anniversary of the end of World War I honoring veterans of all wars and military service. Remember, not all veterans saw combat or war. If they served, they are veterans."

He closed by stating "We must continue to honor them, not just on Veterans Day but every day, in every way we can. "The best way to honor veterans is to take an active part in maintaining freedom in America. We must teach future generations about what it means to be an American. We must volunteer in our communities, take care of veterans and their families, vote in elections, and try to make America the very best it can be."
Mayor Litman's Words
Veterans Honor Guard
Later in the morning, the annual Veterans Day Parade traveled down Mesquite Boulevard with on-lookers cheering and waving. Among the over 30 entries in the parade were the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association, the Bonanza High School JROTC, the Bengal Battalion, Mesquite Toes, and Mesquite Show Girls.

Bringing up the rear were the Littlefield and the Mesquite Fire Departments with their current and vintage fire apparatus. Parade walkers handed out candy and flags to the crowds. The parade was organized by the Veterans Center with the assistance of Mesquite Elks Lodge #2811.
On Veterans Day, a special dedication ceremony was held at Pioneer Park. Local Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Chapter dedicated a plaque to honor the patriots of the American Revolution. Through the tireless efforts of local chapter Vice Regent Kitty Smith and help from the Mesquite Veterans Center, this is one of only 50 plaques and the only one placed in Nevada. Music was provided by the Sun City Sounds under the direction of Rita Hermie. Mayor Al Litman spoke of the rich history of the DAR and their goals of promoting historic preservation, education of youth, and patriotism through love of our country. Several Nevada State DAR dignitaries were in attendance.
Sun City Sounds
DAR Plaque at Pioneer Park
Later that evening, the Exchange Club hosted One Thousand Flags Over Mesquite opening ceremony. Master of Ceremonies and USAF Veteran Paul Benedict led the ceremony with the presentation of colors by the Mesquite Veterans Honor Guard. Our national anthem was sung by USAF LTC Janet McDonald (Ret.) and brief remarks by US Army Veteran Mayor Al Litman. The guest speaker was USN CDR Bill Ennis (Ret.) and a final closing musical performance by Janet McDonald. The public was encouraged to walk among the flags to reflect on the sacrifices of our soldiers.

The closing ceremony was held Sunday, November 13. Paul Benedict and Exchange Club Members led the Pledge of Allegiance and the Desert Dames Half Notes Choir sang our national anthem. The keynote speaker was US Army SGM Ed Fizer (Ret.). The Exchange club presented Steve Reynolds, President/VFW Commander of the Mesquite Veterans Center, a check for $5,000 dollars. A flag retirement ceremony was conducted by Mesquite Fire and Rescue and USMC Veteran Ron Bird played "Taps." Following a benediction by Exchange Club Member Diane McClure, Dennis Hangey played "Amazing Grace" on his bagpipes, slowly walking between the thousand flags waving in the crisp afternoon breeze.
Thank you, Dr. Peggy Purner, the Exchange Club, and all who supported and volunteered, for bringing this heartwarming annual event to Mesquite.
Lastly, the Southern Nevada Symphony Orchestra presented "A Salute to Veterans and Their Families" on November 12 at Mesquite Community Theatre. The inspiring music was conducted by Dr. Selmer Spitzer. The music selections included popular favorites such as "The Star-Spangled Banner", the "1812 Overture" and "The Washington Post." Other delightful beautiful pieces included the "Ukraine National Anthem", the "Queen of the Night", "Symphony No. 1 in g minor", and the "Inchon" which was presented with bi-directional drum sound. Guest trumpeters from T.A.P.P.S. played the profoundly heartfelt "Taps."

The performance was narrated by (my favorite) Greg Dutkowski. A fine salute it was.
EVENTS That May Interest You
Join the Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce Business Mixer Wednesday, November 30 at the Mesquite Library Community Room. Networking begins at 3:00 p.m. with the program commencing at 4:00 p.m.
This is my farewell newsletter.
It has been an honor serving you the past two years on the council and representing Mesquite on the SNHD board. I have enjoyed bringing you information about the city in these newsletters and appreciated your feedback and support.

Not all goodbyes are bad. Here is Smiley on her way to a foster family after much time on the streets as a stray and in a kill shelter in California.
Be safe, everyone. See you around town.

Karen